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Can Cats Eat Betta Fish? How To Prevent It?

Can Cats Eat Betta Fish

Being both a cat and a betta fish enthusiast, one question may invariably pop up in your mind. When we talk about a fish and a cat together, we generally infer that there will come a time when your cat eats your fish down the road. Similarly, we can also question can cats eat betta fish.

It is a general norm that cats like eating fish. It is valid to some extent, but not for all fish. Some fish like the pufferfish can be pretty toxic for a cat if ingested. If we talk about a cat eating a betta fish then we should inform you beforehand that the cat can swallow the betta fish. Betta fish do not poison the cat so you need not worry. However, it may be possible for your cat to choke. Although cats can eat your betta fish, there are some things you can do to prevent it.

Can Cats Eat Betta Fish?

cat eating fish

Answering the question, can cats eat betta fish? A cat can eat your betta fish. Cats are naturally carnivorous and can eat fish. While some fish can poison your cat if ingested, a betta fish poisoning your cat is highly unlikely.

Cats are known for their hunting instincts, and they like a good chase. Therefore, if they see a brightly colored fish nearby, they would look at it as a meal source. Having brightly colored fins with smooth swimming action, Betta fish can entice a cat to go for it.

However, as long as you have got your tank adequately covered, there is a slight chance that your cat will eat your betta fish. But if your cat has got an eye for your betta fish, then the cat may start to harass your betta fish even though it is still inside the tank.

Continuous harassment by the cat may stress out your betta fish. Betta fish are not that hardy a fish, and such stress can prove to be fatal for your betta fish. Stress is the last thing your betta fish wants, as stress makes the Betta highly susceptible to various bacterial and fungal infections.

Even though a betta fish is only about 2.5 inches in length, it may still be a choking hazard for your cat if swallowed whole. Additionally, a betta fish contains quite several bones that may get stuck in your cat’s throat, thereby causing the cat to choke.

If you see your cat gagging, drooling, rubbing its face on the ground, or pawing its mouth, then it may be a sign of your cat choking. Therefore, if your cat eats a betta fish by chance, you should keep an eye for such choking symptoms for another few hours.

Thus, even though a betta fish cannot poison your cat, it may as well be a choking hazard for your cat. If you see any of the signs mentioned above of choking your cat, you should immediately go to a certified vet nearby for your cat’s check-up.

Can cats eat betta fish? It is quite possible. It would be best if you looked for choking symptoms for a few hours after your cat has eaten your fish. It is doubtful that your betta fish has poisoned your cat. However, there are ways to prevent your cat from eating your betta fish.

How To Prevent Cats To Eat Betta Fish?

Prevent Cats To Eat Betta Fish

So can cats eat betta fish? Yes. They can. However, you need not worry as there are some things that you can do to prevent your cat from eating your betta fish. Here are some ways to control your betta fish from getting eaten by a cat.

  • Cover your tank – Perhaps the most effective way, you should always properly cover your tank with a lid that is both durable and resistant. Betta fish are nice jumpers and can easily jump out of the tank if provoked. You can also put objects on top of the tank lid to prevent your cat form jumping on the tank.
  • Strudy tank – Having a lightweight aquairum with a fragile stand can easliy be tipped over by a cat and with it your betta fish. Thus, make sure you get a tank that is resistant and has a sturdy stand.
  • Use cat repellent – Using things like citronella, eucalyptus, wintergreen, or aqaurium foil near the betta fish’s tank can prevent your cat from even going near the tank. These things are cat repllents that means cats hate them.
  • Keep the tank out of your cat’s reach – You can keep your betta tank out of your cat’s reach by placing it in such a place where there is no way that your cat may reach it. You can make sure that there is no chairs, tables or cables near your tank that a cat may use to reach the tank.
  • Other factors – While carrying out the weekly cleaning of your betta tank ,you need to remove the lid on your tank for sometime. During this, make sure that your cat is locked away or is no where near the tank to prevent it from attacking your undefended betta fish.

Having answered the can cats eat betta fish, we have now listed some of how you can prevent your cat from eating your betta fish. Follow the ways mentioned above to get the best chance of your betta fish surviving in front of your cat.

FAQs On Can Cats Eat Betta Fish

Are bettas toxic to cats?

NO. Betta fish are not toxic to cats. However, they can prove to be a choking hazard for your cat.

Do cats like watching fish?

YES. It is a standard norm that cats like watching fish, and it is valid to some extent. However, majorly they see the fish as a source of food rather than finding them attractive.

What to do after a cat eats a betta fish?

Well, there is not much you can do about the betta fish at this point. You should, however, look for choking signs in your cat as it is pretty standard. Immediately report to a vet if you see any choking signs.

Final Thoughts

So can cats eat betta fish? Yes. Your cat can eat your betta fish. However, you can prevent this by adequately covering your tank with a lid. Although the betta fish will not poison your cat, you should look for choking signs in your cat.